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ECHS team ‘Clean-ish’ earns top prize in Novozymes Biotech Challenge

Eight teams of Biology students from Franklin County’s Early College High School competed in the 2019 Novozymes Biotech Challenge. Team “Clean-ish” took home top honors.

The challenge began October 28th and concluded November 25th with more than 100 students, parents, educators and Novozymes officials watching as the teams made their final presentations in front of a panel of judges at Novozymes in Franklinton.

“What you did is very similar to the work we do here in our labs every day,” said Renee Garza, Novozymes Vice President of Household Care. Novozymes develops and markets enzymes that are used in products worldwide that can replace the use of harsher chemicals in things like detergent.

“That’s what I like about the Biotech Challenge,” said Arlan Peters, Novozymes Director of Sustainability. “It’s applied learning and teaching.”

The challenge is a project that tasked the teams with determining which enzymes (used as cleaning agents) were contained in a sample of an unknown detergent. Each group designed its own experiment, collected data and created a presentation that revealed its analysis and conclusions. The project allowed students the opportunity to apply concepts learned in Biology classes with a regular task like cleaning clothes.

Franklin County Schools Superintendent Rhonda Schuhler and ECHS Principal Erica Shoulders-Royster both attended the event and emphasized the importance of relationships with community partners like Novozymes for public education.

The teams that participated in the challenge included the following groups: Acrylic Catalysts, To Clean or Not to Clean?, Clean-ish, The Snazzy Jazzy Detergent Challenge, Clash of the Detergents, Menzymes in Black, The Imagination Enzymers and Breaking Down the Bad. After the closely, competitive round of presentations, the panel of judges awarded prizes to the following teams:

1st Place: Clean-ish
2nd Place: Acrylic Catalysts
3rd Place: Menzymes in Black
Honorable Mention: The Snazzy Jazzy Detergent Challenge

 

A group of high school students pose with adults

1st Place: Clean-ish (holding certificates) with Novozymes officials and ECHS Biology Teacher

 

A group of high school students pose with adults

2nd Place: Acrylic Catalysts (holding certificates) with Novozymes officials and ECHS Biology Teacher

 

A group of high school students pose with adults

3rd Place: Menzymes in Black (holding certificates) with Novozymes officials and ECHS Biology Teacher

 

A group of high school students pose with adults

HM: The Snazzy Jazzy Detergent Challenge (holding certificates) with Novozymes officials and ECHS Biology Teacher